Considering The Health of The Incarcerated Citizens

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Dear Honorable Governor Hogan, 

 

As your constituent, we are writing to inform you about the potential dangers posed by COVID-19 to the Department of Public Safety & Correctional Services (DPCS), especially in dormitory style housing such as Dorsey Run Correctional Facility (DRCF) at Jessup, MD. We esteem it urgent and imperative, so we are seeking your help to resolve this potentially detrimental problem that threatens the health and safety of this protected class of citizens housed in numerous facilities maintained by DPCS. For example, DRCF is an open dormitory prison which houses about a 1000 minimum, prerelease, and/or work release inmates.It consists of 32 dorms which are 69x25 feet in dimension, with each dorm housing  about 30 inmates sleeping in bunk spaces about 2-3 feet apart. 


By design, this facility violates your executive order which pushes for the practice of social distancing, no gatherings of 10 or more people and since many inmates have preexisting health conditions such as asmitha or any other forms of respiratory problems. This puts the protective class of citizens at a high risk of contracting COVID-19. Furthermore, there have been confirmed positive cases of the virus not only at Dorsey run but at other nearby facilities as well. The state of Maryland is in a critical moment in regards to dealing with COVID-19 and there is a need to be more proactive to protect this class of citizens. We are asking for you to exercise your authority as governor of Maryland to push the DPCS to consider housing these inmates under safer conditions. This can be done by expediting the mandatory release of some of these inmates who have 24 months or less until the end of their sentence. 

 

Finally, the releases can be done by placing individuals on home detention, putting them under the supervision of parole and probation, and or some traditional housing. By this, you ensure the safety of the public which is a priority by maintaining supervision of inmates who’s releases have been expedited by using the possibility of reincarceration as a mitigating force to deter reoffending inmates. The state can and should work to improve the health and safety of those protected class citizens held within their care. 

 

Thank you for your time and your efforts to resolve the circumstances of COVID-19, Governor Hogan.